New Content - Game Modes
A new game mode selection screen has been added, which will be polished up in a future update, but serves the purpose of selecting between the THREE game modes Sumo now offers. Skirmish remains as the default Sumo experience, but in addition, you may now play…
Blaze - Flying high above the surface of the Moon in a brand new environment, players are contained within a glass arena, completely surrounded by walls. Unlike Skirmish, there is no ‘ring out’ - you must actively defeat your opponents by utilizing a trail of light emitting from your character at all times. The arena will continually shrink over time, ultimately leading to a close-quarters cage match.
In Blaze, characters always move - you can’t stay still at any point. This means maneuvering around the arena is more difficult than in Skirmish arenas, but utilize the walls lining the edge of the arena to your advantage - hitting one will repel your character away from the wall, gaining a swift directional boost. Try jumping into the wall to avoid getting boxed in by your opponents.
Jumping and Dashing are still enabled in Blaze, but there are no Boost Pads, and thus no special Abilities for this mode.
Hazard - Taking a tour through the worlds of Sumo, Hazard features an endlessly looping track that progresses from the background of the level towards the players. On this track, walls will appear, forcing players to maneuver around them or jump over them to avoid getting pushed off. The longer the match goes on, the faster the track moves, and the more walls will appear.
Unlike Skirmish maps, Hazard matches use a Lives system rather than a point system. Each player has 5 Lives, and will respawn a few seconds after being knocked off. Whoever outlives their opponents the longest wins the match.
Boost Pads remain in Hazard matches, but all characters have a completely different Ability. Collect 3 Boost and activate your ability to spawn a brand new Hazard unique to your character, which will stay in the level indefinitely. The track loops back onto itself after some time, so your previously placed Hazards will still be around to waylay your opponents.
New Content - 9th Character
Although not enabled yet, the 9th character is complete and will be enabled very soon. This character is paired with a particular event coming up and will be enabled once that date is reached.
Sumo is now available in 25 languages! In the Options menu, select your language of choice, and all text should be updated. Please report any cases to our discussion boards of localization errors or any instances of untranslated text. Note that the countdown announcer still only speaks in English… for now.
The game’s primary font has been changed to a font that supports characters in more languages.
Unreal Engine version updated to 4.21.
Updated the controls physics for character movement, resulting in some minor changes to how quickly a player can turn and accelerate.
A physics update for character collision has increased character max speed by a small amount, and more importantly, resolved some issues regarding not rolling smoothly on surfaces (resolving the occasional jump into the air like you rolled onto a jagged surface).
Quality of Life
When playing in Online multiplayer, the character select lobby now requires a press-and-hold to leave the lobby (or disband it as the host). This should help to prevent accidental disconnects.
Spectre’s Ghost Form portion of his ability now prevents Jumping while active, since his height is constantly being adjusted automatically to get him back to the arena’s safe height. This prevents the Jump cooldown from getting wasted. Spectre now also hovers a bit higher than before during Ghost Form, ensuring he can safely get back onto the arena.
Aesthetics & Music
The tutorial screen has been visually updated for better clarity of information.
The tutorial screen has been updated to show different videos and information for Race and Hazard game modes.
The special bar has been visually reworked, now showing a curved bar under the character rather than a flat bar in front of them. This gives a bit more screen space to both the bar and the characters, since the bar isn’t obscuring the bottom of the character models any more. The jump and dash portions of the bar now completely fade away when inactive, and all three portions will brightly flash whenever they are ready to be used.
New Main Menu music has been installed.
Many of the game’s sounds have been retrofitted to properly use 3D sounds, so action happening on the left side of the screen should play louder on a left speaker.
New sound effects have been added to support the Blaze and Hazard game modes.
All Bots have been updated to function on Blaze and Hazard matches. They still aren’t quite as good as they are in Skirmish matches, but they will be improved in future updates.
Fixed an issue that would cause the Opening Ceremony to show no one at the start if no player was in the upper left character slot.
Fixed a bug where the network status pop-up (connecting/disconnecting) for Online multiplayer was displayed in black and white rather than in color.
Fixed the lobby exit button in the Character Select screen not respecting the swiping fade out/fade in animations in some circumstances, clipping in and out instead.
Fixed the character select screen’s player name text bleeding off the edges of the UI if the player’s name was long enough. The player name is now scaled to fit into the UI.
Fixed a bug with Pixie’s ability continually rotating even if no input was pressed in a direction.
Fixed an issue with Air Control maneuverability not being active immediately, but requiring being hit, dashing, or any other high-physics effect before the control would kick in.
Fixed an issue where splash effects when players hit water would stop working after the first round of a match.
Fixed a large number of various compile errors and network replication errors, which should improve frame performance and network performance.
We definitely learned some lessons here about the amount of ‘stuff’ to pack into a single build. Our goal was to update in February, but the amount of content in this update required more time to iterate and bugfix than initially expected.
The next update won’t take 3 more months - we’re shooting for no later than the end of April. The primary feature of that update will be two MORE game modes, getting us to a total of 5 modes, at which point we will be content-complete - 9 Characters, 4 Arenas for the primary game mode, and 4 alternate game modes, many of which offer their own unique environments and gameplay mechanics. After that, we’ll be switching our focus to polishing up the existing aspects of the game.